According to Bloomberg, Apple filed for a local trademark for the name “iWatch” with the Japanese authorities on June 3. The filing has since been made public, and though Apple has in the past filed for many trademarks as a protective move, this one is stirring debate about Apple’s plans for entering the wearable tech marketplace.
In early June, other reports surfaced suggesting Apple filed for local trademark protection for the name “iWatch” in Russia. Since the beginning of 2013, many rumors have surfaced about an Apple smartwatch, with the suggestion that Apple’s devoted a 100-person team to the task of developing the product. Tim Cook also noted that a wrist-born device was “interesting” when he spoke at the recent AllThingsD event.
A smartwatch may be a clever idea for Apple, because it leverages some of the slowly growing excitement about wearable tech in a less controversial way than Google’s Glass device, and could create a new revenue stream as the smartphone and tablet markets mature.